IBC Q&A: Angela Raguse, Fraunhofer Digital Cinema Alliance

Fraunhofer Digital Cinema Alliance is showing a couple of upcoming technologies with relevance to sports broadcasting. Can you tell me about a few of them?

We are highlighting our latest developments with regard to adaptive streaming. From [an initial base in consumer] we want to apply this on the pro side without losing resolution or dropping frames, and with virtually no compression thanks to the use of JPEG2000 encoding. The basic idea is that you apply JEPG2000, coat every image in that, and therefore keep the high resolution; but you only transfer the high resolution for the main camera, so if you producer, say, changes to camera 3 because it has captured the goal or some exciting fan reaction, you can switch to that. That is the basic idea behind adaptive content streaming, and we think it will have a lot of relevance to live entertainment, sports and other productions where you use a lot of cameras.

On the audio side, we are showing the first prototype of a technology called Microphone Manager that offers the user a full spatial audio 3D preview of their microphone set-up. It really gives the potential to check if everything is configured correctly ahead of going into a live event.

Any other developments you’d like to highlight?

As part of the Spatial-AV project, we have the most innovative lightfield recording system to date. Using sparse angular sampling, the new four-by-four array provides 16 slightly different views, capturing the lightfield in one shot. We are also showing the new miniaturised OmniCam-360 system, which enables the real-time acquisition of 360-degree ultra-high definition panoramic video.

How important is the IBC show for Fraunhofer these days?

It’s really one of the two international meeting places for the industry where we see the greatest opportunity to show new technologies for future-oriented product development. At IBC, and at NAB, we basically meet most of the professional people in the industry engaged in this kind of development. Real business gets done here; it’s a place to be with B2B!

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